SEIU ULTCW Says Gov's Proposal 'Morally Wrong, Economically Unhealthy'
Below is a statement released today by Laphonza Butler, President of SEIU ULTCW, in response to Governor Schwarzenegger's May Revise and his proposed $750 million in cuts to In-Home Supportive Services:
"Today, in his May Revise, Governor Schwarzenegger continued his egregious and inhumane assault on California's low-income seniors, people with disabilities, and those who care for them by pushing for vicious cuts to the state's vital, cost-effective in-home care program.
"For the last few months, we, along with partners and supporters in communities across the state, have shown the incredible value that the in-home care program provides to California taxpayers and those it serves. Policy reports from UC Berkeley, Beacon Economics, and others have repeatedly revealed the negative impact such a flawed policy of cuts would have on the state's economy and on the lives California's most vulnerable residents.
"While the Governor's revision involves cuts less than originally proposed, it is far short from being fiscally sound, acceptable or humane. When you're talking about the service of last resort, the final safety net, any cut will place lives at risk.
"As outlined in his May Revise, the Governor's proposed $750 million in cuts to the In-Home Supportive Services program (IHSS) would have a profound and devastating impact on California's economy, unemployment rate and the lives of nearly 350,000 California seniors, disabled residents and those who provide them with daily care.
"Governor Schwarzenegger's desire to sever this lifeline service means over 200,000 low-income seniors and people with disabilities would lose the only care available that allows them to live safely at home - forcing many to turn to costly taxpayer funded institutions, more than 140,000 caregivers would lose their jobs, and California would forfeit more than a billion dollars in matching federal dollars at a time when every dollar is needed (for every $1.00 the state spends on in-home care, California receives nearly $2.00 in federal funding).
"Simply put, the Governor's cuts to in-home care don't add up. Cutting a program that saves taxpayers money, brings much needed federal dollars into the state economy, provides California jobs, and protects our most frail residents doesn't help California's fiscal crisis, it will only make it worse.
"The members of SEIU ULTCW stand united to fight these cuts in order to ensure that our most fragile residents continue to receive the necessary care they need to live safely at home.
"Californians want to keep their loved ones Healthy at Home. The Governor's Revised Budget does not do that."
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